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Us 15, Washington 14, Boehner 11, America 9, Reid 9, John Boehner 5, Iraq 4, United States 4, Afghanistan 4, Mitch Mcconnell 3, United States Of America 2, Harry Reid 2, Schumer 2, Cantor 1, Judd Gregg 1, Pentagon 1, Raiments 1, Biden 1, United States Senate 1, Moody 's 1,
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  CSPAN    Today in Washington    News/Business. News.  

    July 26, 2011
    6:00 - 6:59am EDT  

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cannot make the tough decisions now, why would we make those tough decisions later?" i do not see how multiple votes on the debt ceiling increase can help get us to where we want to go. senator reid, self, and most democrats agree with him on that point. republicans have apparently flip-flop on this point. a short-term deal is still a nonstarter in the senate. the senate plan offers real potential to finally break this impasse. it makes difficult choices, difficult choices for us and includes $1.20 trillion in domestic discretionary programs including defense. this is a serious belt tightening that will have consequences for years to come. it includes significant savings on the mandatory side. it includes savings from winding down the wars in iraq and afghanistan.
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these are real savings that cbo scores at about $1 trillion. we know that some republicans will quibble over these savings but they have no leg to stand on. but wars are the second biggest policy driver of our deficits after the bush tax cut for the conduct and the worst ads to our debt, to is undeniable that winding down the war's delivers savings. the administration tells us with the wind down, they can't prosecute -- they can count on billions of dollars over the next decade the cbo count $1.67 trillion. we know the republicans agree theythis mstath because
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included the same settings in the ryan budget that passed the house. they never criticized that accounting and it is hard to see how they could do so now. lastly, senator reid's proposal allows for a joint committee that has the potential to achieve deeper savings down the road. all in all, this is an offer that republicans cannot refuse. all of the cuts in center repots proposal have been supported at one point or another by republicans. if they refuse this offer, it is simply that they want a default for whatever reason. as senator reid said, it need -- it meets the requirements and they laid out, dollar for dollar savings in the debt ceiling increase, no revenues, and cuts that have supported. ask yourself and the american people will be asking themselves, if they oppose this,
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why, this is everything best for? speaker dinner laid out the main criteria. he said the -- speaker boehner laid out the main criteria. he said the tax increases must be off the table. our proposal includes no revenue-raisers whatsoever. this is a very hard decision for many on our side. our side knows that any serious debt reduction plan must include revenue but in the interest of preventing a default we can have the fight and revenues later when we finally pursue the grand bargain that speaker boehner could not bring himself to accept from president obama. we have offered them this plan. it is a tough choice. for democrats, we get an
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increase -- an increase in the debt ceiling for 2012 and succeed in preventing any benefit cuts to medicare, medicaid, or social security. this proposal meets both bottom lines. it is a good deal. at this point, there is no alternative other than and no basis for republicans rejecting this proposal other than that they want a default. thank you. >> you say this change after you went to the white house. this mr. mcconnell lying to us about this? >> week in the legislative
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branch -- we in the legislative branch internet use harsh words. words.t use harsh we had good negotiations that they could not get off of the six-month deal. they could never get off that. as we were negotiating, were soying to come up with 302's we could do our preparation bills. that sure was given to leader cantor and his staff to arrive at that and that is where they started going backwards, wanting more money for defense. i would say to my friend, mitch mcconnell, nice try but don't blame this on the president. >> there are now two rival plans
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in the house and the senate. is this a game of chicken? could i bipartisan deals to be reached? >> rebutted listened to which shower -- some everyone listened to what senator schumer said in the till. our plan is pretty simple. for dollarel savings is what they said they wanted. -- dollar for dollar savings is what they said they wanted. this is not a game of chicken. we are about to go over the cliff. they are sending us something we have agreed to. they are sending us virtually
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nothing we have agreed to. it is a short-term extension. president obama and we have been on record for weeks saying we will not agree to that. >> [unintelligible] >> we have extended the short term a lot of times. 30 times, but never with a condition. we have just extended that in the years the senator schumer and i have been income -- in congress. they want to do with lots of terrible conditions. >> they say the savings from one begun or is in iraq and afghanistan are not real savings. >> republicans in the house of representatives voted for this. in the senate, four republicans voted for it. it is storable by cbo and omb .
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>> how can it be good when it is good in their budget and not good in our budget? >>, took a cut in 2012 the decks -- how much would a cut in 2012 be? >> my staff would know that. >> s&p and moody's have said that they want to see a long- term reduction in the trajectory of the jet -- debt to gdp ratio. in this plan, that does not get to entitlements? . >> there seems to have been acceptance all over in this capital with my idea to have a joint committee. i understand it will be in the proposal that john boehner will send over. it is a good proposal where
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everyone is aware -- everyone should be aware that the only way to reach those numbers is with revenues. that is what every time we talk, we talk about the need to do something with revenue. everyone knows that the president has said and we have said that we will not touch entitlements until there is some movement on revenues. that means taxes. people are shipping jobs overseas and that means these oil companies are getting massive subsidies and still making billions of dollars. it means millionaires and billionaires may not be able to get the same tax cuts they have gotten during the bush administration. moody's is right. we need long-term. we're talking but getting this country out of the threat of default for the next two years. >> republicans say you are playing politics and obama is trying to protect his campaign. >> we would be happy to do this
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longer if they are interested. >> this is an example of someone who is so nice and polite. you should all learn this. >> what do you see as the drop dead deadline to come together? >> we are fast approaching the drop dead date. it is a week from tomorrow. that is why it is unfortunate that republicans have taken some this time to send us something. they want to have a showdown. we have been trying to work out something with them for several days now. the president worked very hard. he has spoken to john boehner. he has spoken to mitch mcconnell. he has had them down to the
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white house. he has had us down to the white house and every time we seem to make progress, they walk away. this did not just happen recently. the agreement was forged between senators judd gregg and kent conrad and i walked out of that vote. -- and they walked out of that about. they walked out of the biden talks. they cannot take yes for an answer. >> this idea that there is even handedness and the quality is just not fair -- there. we have moved in their direction so many different times and they do not budge. no revenues, and a ravenous, and a ravenous -- that is why we cannot get a grand deal. -- no revenues. . we move totally in their direction and their proposal does not move 1 inch in our direction. that is why the american people
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are saying that the cause of the fall and the cause of gridlock are the republicans in congress, not the president and not the democrats. it has not been an even-handed where we give some and they give some. this proposal was crafted by senator reid with them in mind. this is what they asked for. there are 100 people in the house who do not care if we default, many of them, who are extreme and ideological, and you have not seen the house republican leadership responsibly resist that. that is the problem here. if you think it is even stephen to have a small group of extreme people drive the debate on the republican side and democrats should give in, that makes no
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sense because it is terrible for the country. those 100 people do not represent america. everything says that. >> did to show the president your plan at the white house last night and did he endorse it? >> of course. >> will become not endorse this? >> of course. >> have you spoken to any other republicans about this like mitch mcconnell? >> we had many conversations over the weekend and he knows what we're doing. >> can you get 60 votes? >> i would hope so. we're giving them what they want. >> then what? >> we will have to see what the next step is. next question. >> you mentioned about working with leader cantor or being
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unable to. is there any reason why you would not have this same issue come september 30 if there is a problem getting 302 members. >> in my legislation we have the numbers in there. we would have the preparation bill for two years. thanks. >> when will there be a decision? >> sometime tonight. >> now we will hear from the senate budget committee ranking member jeff sessions on the senate democrats debt ceiling bill. senator session spoke on the senate floor before harry reid
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brought the bill to the floor. tremendously important. all year we've conducted senate business with regard to the financial future of our country in the most troubling way, so far as i can tell. it's unlike anything we've done in our history. i would say, from a structural, systemic circumstance, this nation has never had a more serious debt problem. we are borrowing 40 cents of every dollar we spend. yes, we do have a war going on that's costing $150 billion this year. the deficit this year will be $1.5 trillion. $1.5 trillion in deficit. it's not the war. it's only about 10% of our deficit, unfortunately.
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back in world war ii, we could see our way out of the war and our victory, and we had great growth in the future. but the deficits we're accruing every day, every week, every month are significant because they're going to be hard to change. we're just spending more than we take in on a host of different programs, and we've got to change. and we can change. and if we do change and get this country back on a growth path, i think we'll be in the right, right way. so, i have repeatedly warned that by avoiding going through the budget process this year, a process required by law that this senate, under democratic leadership, explicitly refused to do. the majority leader said it would be foolish to have a budget. we're now about 820 days or so without a budget, over two years
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we've not had a budget for the united states of america, and they never even attempted to, even though a law says we should pass one by april 15. it doesn't put anybody in jail. maybe that's what it should have done. maybe a bunch of people would be in jail today. maybe we'd have a budget if we had some teeth in the act. but it's a statute of the united states that requires a budget. we've not done so. so then we begin to hear the warning six months ago that we would be reaching a point where we need to raise the debt limit, the debt ceiling that we have. congress has said, mr. president, you can borrow money but only so much. you can't borrow more than the amount 14-some-odd trillion dollars. that's all. if you need to borrow more, congress will have to appropriate it. we have the power of the purse under the constitution. so this has been brewing. we've been heading to that. i've been warning since we
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haven't done our job, since the budget committee hasn't met about these issues, the appropriations committee has not met about these issues, the finance committee has not met about the tax, tax and mandatory entitlement programs that are under their jurisdiction; no work has been done all year. none. but we're told not to worry, our leaders are going to meet a few times in secret. and this little group failed. and this group with the vice president met, and that didn't work. and then they're going to meet with the president, and that didn't work. and finally last night, as senator wicker said, it did appear an agreement was reached between the democratic leadership and the republican leadership on a bill that at least would get us past this debt crisis. so they had the leadership agreement. i haven't read it. i don't know what's in it. i'm going to want to know what's in the bill. i have a constitutional
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responsibility, as do the other 99, 98 senators here to make a good judgment on it. but it is odd that after all of that and a bipartisan agreement was reached, the president walked away from it. he's going to blame now speaker boehner who produced a budget? the republican house produced a far-reaching historic budget that would actually change the debt trajectory of our country, put us on the right path, the path to restoring prosperity, the creation of jobs because this debt is so large, it's a wet blanket as speaker boehner said. i called it an anchor, a weight that is pulling down the economy because expert economists have told us so. experts say when you have this much debt, you lose a million jobs a year that would otherwise be created. so we've got a serious problem, and i'm not pleased about it.
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i just felt all along this is exactly what's going to happen, somewhere in the back of the minds of the president or the leaders or somebody was the idea that they would bring up a plan at the 11th hour, the 11th hour, 50th minute, bring it to the floor of the senate, say if you don't vote for it members of the senate, if you don't vote for it members of the house, we're going to have a debt crisis and it will all be your fault. well, i'm not in that. i'm not going to vote for any kind of significant legislation as this is until i've had a chance to read it and think about it. and what's going to happen, i'm told, after the majority leader reid produced a one-page summary of his plan, this afternoon told us not to worry; he's got a one-page summary. trust us. he's going to introduce legislation tonight, and we'll vote wednesday morning.
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and it will be good for america. just do what i tell you and go along and mind your manners, and we'll get this thing taken care of. trust me. the american people have been trusting washington too long. the american people know there is no justification whatsoever in this country that we are spending so much money at 40% of it has to be borrowed. they know better. they know we have no business spending $3,700,000,000,000 where we take in only $220,000,000,000. that's what happened in in last election. they say these tea party people, they are not good americans. they're angry. they're mad. that's not good. you're bad people. well, give me
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a break. if we had a recall election, we all ought to be voted out of office, i suppose. there's no way we should ever have been in this situation. so now under the pressure of the american people and fear of the next election, the president -- why did he reject this bipartisan agreement? well, it would require us to meet again next year and talk about more cuts because the cuts they're talking about are clearly insufficient to meet the challenge we are facing today. clearly insufficient. we've got to do more. so if you run up your credit card too much and you hit the limit and you want the limit raised, the person who's loaning the money, the american people, would like it know, have you changed your habits, are you going to do better, let's see budget, a plan that gets us out of this fix.
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so that has been steadfastly rejected by the leadership in this senate all year, and we knew we were heading to this debate. -- to this date. senator reid has thrown something out there. let's talk about a little bit about what it appears that's in it. we've had -- the president has had a friendly press on most of the things that he's proposed. when he proposed a budget, the democratic senate never produced one but by law is to produce one. every pleas ha president has pre every year. the president produced one this year. the lowest annual deficit in
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that budget would be $740 billion. the highest deficit president bush ever had was $450 billion and he was criticized for that. the lowest he would have in ten years, $750 billion, and in the tenth year it's become over $1 trillion. according to the congressional budget office, analysis of his budget. that's where we're heading. that's the kind of thing that the president has submitted to us. and you know what he entad it? he said, i'm proud of my budget. it will have america living within its means. can you believe the president of the united states said that? that a budget that the lowest annual deficit would be $700-plus billion was living within our means? he said also, quote, "it would add no more to our debt." and his budget director, mr. lew, jack lew said the same
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thing. breath taking. so forgive me if i am a a not buying into a proposal on one page. it was produced this afternoon, said we're going to reduce the deficit by $2.7 trillion. forgive me if i'm not buying that that until i see it and it's been scored. that's what i think ought to happen here today. by the way, you've heard the debates, and speaker boehner used this phrase and others have used it, "we want to have dollar-for-dollar spending to debt reduction." and what in a means -- excuse me, a debt ceiling increase. twha means is, if you increase the debt ceiling and allow the
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government to borrow another $1 trillion, you should cut spending by $1 trillion. that's just a rough idea. i don't know how they came up with that. that's what they came up with. remember, the debt is still going up every year because we're still spending more than we take in. just remember, however, this is like wimp yivment in old popeye's cartoon. winpy said, give me a hamburger today and i will pay you tomorrow. "what this is is you're going to get an immediate ability to borrow $1 trillion, $2 trillion more, raising debt limit that much on a promise that we'll reduce spending by that amount over ten years, not one year, ten years. so this is a dangerous process. this is the kind of rhetoric that's put us in the position that we are today that 40 cents of every dollar we spend is
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borrowed. it's what's threatening the financial future of our country, this kind of thinking in washington. and we've got to change it. we've got to get honest about our numbers and as the rank republican on the budget committee, i feel an obligation and our staff is eager to see the legislative language, not a one-page outline, about what will actually happen with our spending. we want to be sure that the promises made for this bill are more accurate than the ones president obama made what he said his budget would call for us to live within our means when it plainly does not. i'll just mention a couple of things at this point that jump out at me from the one-page outline that we've seen. majority leader reid talks about his plan would reduce spending
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by $2.7 trillion. but really it appears to represent a $1.2 trillion or so reduction in discretionary spending, and the rest of it is accrued by other -- in other ways. speaker boehner's proposal has a discretionary spending reduction of about the same, but what's obvious is that speaker boehne boehner's commission that would reduce spending more has a target, a goal, to reach an additional $1.8 trillion, whereas the points produced by senator reid mentions a commission, but it has no reduction required in spending as a part of the duty of that
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commission. they don't have any obligation to produce a reduction in spending. but what else is here? part -- the other factor is that we are now drawing down the cost of our military efforts in afghanistan and iraq. last year we spent a little over $150 billion. this year we'll spend a little over $100 billion. and the plan is to soon be down to at least $50 billion in two or three years. so over the ten-year period there'll be about eight years at nearly $50 billion or so spent on the war instead of $150 billion. that's part of the plan that we've been operating on for a long time. $150 billion for the war is not baseline expenditure of the united states. it was never projected to continue at that level, so hopefully we could bring it below $50 billion.
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maybe we went get to $50 billion. i don't know. but what is the reasonable estimate? i think the house republicans and the president said it would drop to $50 billion, and that would be the baseline out there for the rest of the time. that's $1 trillion. that's $1 trillion. so you take $1 trillion out of the $2.7 trillion, you're down to $1.7 trillion. and another thing that's scored in that, since that $1 trillion in war costs is scored the way mr. reid scored that, which is phantom money, it is not a real reduction in baseline government spending. it's always considered to be extra war emergency spending. but he claims interest savings on this money. so another $200 billion.
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so now you got about $1.2 trillion right there overstating his cuts in the elimination of the war. speaker boehner does not do that. his numbers are far more accurate and honest and realistic, really the only way to properly account for them. another thing i would just point out is when you talk about spending and how you account for it, you have to know what the baseline is. one reason this country is broke and is in financial crisis is because we claim we're cutting spending when we're increasing spending. the way it works is, the congressional budget office produces an assumption that we will increase spend at the rate of inflation or some other rate over a period of years. and then if you reduce that rate of increase a little bit, politicians claim they've made
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savings, they've cut spending. but spending is not cutting. spending is still going up. and there are various baselines out there about how to calculate this and it's very significant over ten and even more so over 20 years. so you hear people saying we're cutting spending. under this plan that they're going to cut -- speaker boehner or senator reid, either one of those plans i am confident will show we are spending a good bit more money in the tenth year of their plan than we're spending today. and this is confusing to the american people. i'm really convinced that the only way we can honestly compare the plans is to go back to the basic -- the way families do. do you increase your spending or you don't increase your spending based on what you spent last year. and we have a flat level and how
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much do you increase it over one year, two years, ten years? how much does it go up? that would be the way to do it, and then you can compare plans. then you can see what senator boehner has, congressman ryan had in his budget plan for ten years, senator toomey proposed a very thoughtful ten-year budget plan, balanced our budget in ten years, not easy toad to do. he did it. we need for thinking like that. and get away from this confusing mishmash and claim that i'm saving $1 trillion when nobody plans for us to be spenting $150 $150-plus billion on the war in iraq and afghanistan for the next ten years. that money has never been projected to be spent in that fashion. so, mr. president, we are in a
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situation where it's important for the country to reach an agreement. we need to pass something that raises the debt ceiling in america. i thiet say that, but that is -- i hate to say that, but that is a fact. it would be too disruptive not to do that. but, in exchange for that, as a part of that process, we truly need to start bringing our house into financial order. we are in disarray and disorder. if we were to do that, we can leave this a better country for our children and grandchildren. i know some just want to surge spending and then raise taxes to pay for it. defense department last year got
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about a 2% increase, 3% increase. next year it's projected about a 2% increase in some of the budget numbers. may well not happen because we don't have even that much money. but do you know how much non-defense discretionary spending increased during this time of record deficits under president obama's leadership? not counting the almost $900 billion in stimulus money, not counting that. baseline, non-defense discretionary spending increased 24% at a time we're suferght biggest deficits ever. president bush never had any increases in baseline spending like that. never. it's just stunning. we had a huge majority in the senate, huge majority in the house, the president wanted his investments, and he got these huge increases, and then they want to raise taxes to pay for it and keep it up there and maintain it. and we can't afford maintaining
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that kind of level. we've got to bring it back down to 2009, 2008, 2007 levels. the country is not going to go bankrupt, broke, and people not going to be thrown into the streets if we make -- we return to those kind of levels of spending. and if repaycheck those tough choices like -- and if we make those tough choices like cities and families are doing autumn over america, we can get this house in order. that's what we're going to have to do. so i look forward to studying the plan put forward by the majority leader, the study -- the plan put forward by speaker boehner. the american people need time to know what's in it. what's in either one of them. what it's going to mean to us in terms of taxes and spending and deficits. interest raiments. and then congress needs to have time to vote for it. and i again repeat my deep
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frustration that we have not conducted this in an open, public debate for months now utilizing the established senate procedure, the regular order but have attempted to solve this big problem in secret, behind closed doors with just a few people. i believe that is contrary to the historical understanding of the role of congress and i'm not happy about it, i oppose it and i object to it and i expect an appropriate amount of time to consider whatever plan comes >> president obama called for a feeling congress that would raise the national debt ceiling. the president supports the plan by senate majority leader harry reid which includes $2.70 trillion in savings, no tax increases, and no cuts to social security or medicare. the president spoke from the east room of
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>> the government had a surplus but the money was spent on the two wars and expensive prescription drug program. as a result, the deficit was on track to top $1 trillion, the year i took office. to make matters worse, the recession meant that there was less money coming in and it required us to spend even more. on text cuts for middle-class
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families to spur the economy and unemployment insurance, and aid to states that we could prevent more teachers and firefighters and police officers from being laid off. these emergency steps also added to the deficit. every family knows a little credit card debt is manageable. if we stay on the current path, are growing debt could cost jobs and do serious damage to the economy. more of our tax dollars will go toward paying off the interest on our loans. businesses will be less likely to open up shop and hire workers in the country that cannot balance its books. interest rates could climb for everyone who borrows money. the homeowner with the mortgage, the student with the college loan, the corner store that wants to expand and we will not have enough money to make jobs- creating investments in education and infrastructure or paper vital programs like medicare and medicaid.
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neither party is blameless for the decisions that led to this problem. both parties have a responsibility to solve it. over the last several months, that is what we have been trying to do. i will not bore you with the details of every plan or proposal but basically, the debate has centered around two different approaches. the first approach says less live within our means by making serious historic cuts in government spending. let's cut domestic spending to los level it has been since dwight eisenhower was president. let's cut defense spending at the pentagon by hundreds of billions of dollars. let's cut out waste and fraud in health care programs like medicare and at the same time, let's make modest adjustments so medicare is still there for future generations. finally, let's ask the wealthiest americans and biggest corporations to give up some of their breaks in the tax code and special deductions. this balanced approach asks
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everyone to give a little without requiring anyone to sacrifice too much. it would reduce the deficit by iran $4 trillion and put aside path to pay down our debt the cuts would not happen so abruptly they would be a drag on the economy for prevent us from helping small businesses and middle-class families get back from their feet right now. this approach is also bipartisan. many in my own party are not happy with the painful cuts, enough will be willing to accept them if the burden is fairly shared. republicans might like to see deeper cuts and no revenue at all, there are many in the senate who have said yes, i am willing to put politics aside and consider this approach because i care about solving the problem. to his credit, this is the kind of approach the republican speaker of the house, john boehner, was working on with me over the last several weeks. the only reason this balanced
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approach is not on its way to becoming law right now is because a significant number of republicans in congress are insisting on a different approach, a cuts-only approach, an approach that does not ask the wealthiest americans or biggest corporations to contribute anything at all. because nothing is asked of those of the top of the income scale, such an approach would close the deficit only with more severe cuts to programs we all care about, cuts that place a greater burden on working families. the debate right now is not about whether we need to make tough choices. democrats and republicans agree on the amount of deficit reduction we need. the debate is about how it should be done. most americans, regardless of political party, do not understand how we can ask a senior citizen to pay more for her medicare before we ask a corporate jet and a or the oil companies to give up tax breaks
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that other companies don't get how could we ask a student to pay more for college before we ask hedge fund managers to stop paying taxes at a lower rate than their secretaries? how can we slash funding for education and clean energy before we ask people like me to give up tax breaks we don't need and did not ask for. ? that is not right. it is not fair. we all want a government that lives within its means that there is still things we need to pay for as a country, things like new roads and bridges, weather satellites, food inspection, services to veterans, and medical research. keep in mind that under a balanced approach, the 98% of americans to make under $250,000 would see no tax increases at all, none. i want to extend the payroll tax cut for working families. under a balanced approach, we
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wanted ex families whose incomes have gone up over the next -- a last decade to share in the sacrifice. these patriotic americans are willing to pitch in. over last few decades, they have pitched in every time we passed a bipartisan deal to reduce the deficit. the first time a bill was passed, a predecessor of mine made the case for a balanced approach by saying --"would you rather reduce deficits or interest-rate raising revenue from those were not paying their share or would you rather accept larger budget deficits, higher interest rates, and higher unemployment?" those words were spoken by ronald reagan. many republicans today in the house failed to consider this kind of balanced approach. it was an approach pursued not only by president reagan but by the first president bush,
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president clinton, by myself, and by many democrats and republicans in the united states senate. we are left with a stalemate. what makes the stalemate so dangerous is that it has been tied to something known as the debt ceiling. it is a term that most people outside of washington have never heard of before. raising the debt ceiling does not allow congress to spend more money. it simply gives our country the ability to pay the bills that congress has already racked up. in the past, raising the debt ceiling. was ceiling congress has0's, always pass it and every president has signed it. president reagan did 18 times. george w. bush did seven times. we have to do it by next tuesday, august 2, or else we will not be allowed to pay all of our bills. unfortunately for the past
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several weeks, republican house members have essentially said that the only way they will vote to prevent america's first ever default is it the rest of us agree to their deep spending cuts only approach. if that happens and we default, we would not have enough money to pay all of our bills, bills that include monthly social security checks, veterans' benefits, and the government contracts we have signed thousands of businesses. for the first time in history, our country's aaa credit rating would be downgraded leaving investors around the world to wonder whether the united states is still a good bet. interest rates would skyrocket on credit cards, mortgages, and on car loans which amounts to a huge tax hike and the american people. we would risk sparking a deep economic crisis, this one caused almost entirely by washington.
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defaulting on our obligations is a reckless and irresponsible outcome to this debate. republican leaders say they agree we must avoid default but the new approach that speaker boehner unveiled today which would cut temporarily extend the debt ceiling in exchange for spending cuts would force us to once again faced the threat of default just six months from now. in other words, it does not solve the problem. first of all, a six-month extension of the debt ceiling might not be enough to avoid a credit downgrade and the higher interest rates that all americans would have to pay as a result. we know what we have to do to reduce our deficits. there's no point in putting the economy at risk by kicking the can further down the road. there is an even greater danger to this approach. based on what we have seen these past few weeks, we know what to expect six months from now. the house of representatives will once again refused to
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prevent default unless the rest of us accept their cuts-only approach. again, they will refuse to ask the wealthiest americans to give up their tax cuts or deductions. again, they will demand harsh cuts to programs like medicare. once again, the economy will be held captive unless they get their way. this is no way to run the greatest country on earth. is a dangerous game we have never played before and we cannot afford to play it now. not when the jobs and livelihoods of so many families are at stake. we can't allow the american people to become collateral damage to washington's political warfare. congress now has one week left to act and they are still pass for a pretty senate has introduced a plan to introduce the fall which makes a down payment on deficit-reduction make sure we don't have to go through this again in six months.
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i think that is a much better approach. serious deficit reduction would still require us to tackle the tough challenges of entitlement and tax reform. either way, i have told leaders of both parties that they must come up with a fair compromise in the next few days that can pass both houses of congress and a compromise i can sign. i am confident we can reach this compromise. despite our disagreements, republican leaders and i have found common ground before and i believe that enough members of both parties will ultimately put politics aside and help us make progress. i realize that many of the new members of congress and i don't see eye to eye on many issues. we were each elected by some of the same americans for some of the same reasons. yes, many want government to start living within its means and many are fed up with a system in which the debt seems
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stacked against middle-class americans in favor of the wealthiest few. do you know what people are fed up with most of all? they are fed up with a town or compromise has become a dirty word. they work all day long, many of them scraping by to put food on the table and when these americans come home at night, bone tired, and turn on the news, all they see is the same partisan three ring circus in washington. basie leaders who cannot seem to come together and do what it takes to make life just a little bit better for ordinary americans. they are offended by that. and they should be. the american people may have voted for divided government but they did not vote for a dysfunctional government. i am asking you all to make your voice heard. if you want a balanced approach to reducing the deficit, let your member of congress know. if you believe we can solve this
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problem through compromise, send that message. america, after all, has always been a grand experiment in compromise. as a democracy made up of every race and religion or every belief and point of view is welcome did, we have put to the test time and again the proposition that the heart of our founding. that out of many, we are one . we have engaged in passionate debates about the issues of the day but from slavery to war, from civil liberties to questions of economic justice, we have tried to live by the words that jefferson once wrote -- "every man cannot have his way in all things. without this mutual this position we are disappointed individuals but not a society." history is scattered with the story of those who held fast to rigid ideologies and refused to listen to to those who
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disagreed. those are not the americans we remember. we remember the americans to put country above self and set personal grievances aside for the greater good. we in the report -- we remember the american to help this country together during its most difficult hours and put aside pride and party to form a more perfect union. that is who we remember. that is who we need to be right now. the entire world is watching. let's seize this moment to show why the united states of america is still the greatest nation on earth, not just because we can still keep our word and meet our obligations, but because we can still come together as one nation. thank you, god bless you, and may god bless the united states of america.
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>> now we will get reaction from house speaker john boehner to the president's remarks on the debt ceiling bills in the house and senate. >> good evening, i am john boehner and i served as speaker of the whole house for members of both parties who elected these are difficult times in the life of our nation. ms. are looking for work and have been for some time. spending binge going on in washington is a big part of the reason why for a certain congress, ran a small business in ohio. i was amazed at how different washington, d.c. operated than any other business in america. most american businesses make the hard choices to pay their bills and live within their means, in washington, more spending and more debt is business as usual. i've got news for washington -- those days are over. president obama came to congress in january and requested business as usual with another
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routine increase in the national debt. we said not so fast fo. we have done our best to convince the president to partner with us to do something dramatic to change the fiscal trajectory of our country,
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something that will boost confidence in our economic or renew a measure of faith in our government, and help small businesses get back on track. last week, the house of that it planned a bipartisan support for it is called the cut, cap, and balance act. paves the way for a balanced budget amendment to the constitution which we believe is the best way to stop washington from spending money that it does not have. before we pass the bill and the house, the president said he would veto it. the president would not take yes for an answer. when we thought we might be close on an agreement, the president's demands changed. the president has often said we need a balanced approach which
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in washington means we spend more and you pay more. having read a small business, no the tax increases will destroy jobs. the president is adamant that we cannot make fundamental changes to a retirement programs for it as the father of two daughters, i know these programs will not be there for them and their kids on less significant action is taken out. the president wanted a blank check six months ago and he wanted blank check to that. this is just not going to happen. there is no stomach in congress. the house passed a bill to raise the debt limit with bipartisan support. this week, while the senate is struggling to pass a bill filled with phony accounting and washington gimmicks, we will pass another bill, one that was developed with the support of the bipartisan leadership of the u.s. senate. i expect that bill can and will pass the senate can be sent to the present for his signature. the president signs it, the crisis atmosphere that he has
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created will simply disappear. the debt limit will be raised, spending will be cut by more than $1 trillion, and a serious bipartisan committee of the congress will begin the hard but necessary work of dealing with tough challenges our nation faces. the individuals doing this work will not be outsiders but elected representatives of the people doing the job they were elected to do as outlined in the constitution. those decisions should be made based on how that will affect people who are struggling to get a job, not how they will affect some politicians chances of getting reelected. this debate is not about president obama and house republicans for it is not about congress and the white house. it is about what is standing between the american people and the future we seek for ourselves and our families. i have always believed that the bigger the government of the smaller the people. right now, with a government so big and so expensive it is sapping the drive out of our people and keeping our economy from running at full capacity.
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the solution to this crisis is not complicated. if you are spending more money than you are taking in, you need to spend less of it. there is no centum of a -- there is no rigid as we begin to liberate our economy and our future, we are up to the test. i hope president obama will join us in this work. god bless you and your family and god bless the united states of america. >> army general is president obama's choice to be the next chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, the nation's highest- ranking military officer. admiral mike mullen is stepping down the post. general dental will testify today on his nomination before the senate armed services committee. live coverage is at 9:30 a.m. eastern from cspan 3. >> we provide coverage of
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